United Elite Choice recommendations

United sent out their latest batch of Elite Choice emails yesterday, and I’ve gotten several emails from people asking for advice. Here are just a few general thoughts about some of the options, since there are a different set of choices.

  • Avoid the contests, chances are you’re not going to win.
  • If you plan on flying any substantial amount in July of 2009, consider going with the double miles option. It’s the most rewarding benefit in the batch if you take advantage of it properly.
  • The carry forward of EQM’s is generally the best option, in my opinion, if nothing else strikes you as being good. You never know what next year will look like, especially with rising airfare. Even when it looks like you’ll make your desired status level, it might get you closer to another milestone with other benefits.
  • The rebate on a standard award only makes sense if you’re really thinking of getting a standard award, which I’d advise against in general.
  • The RCC passes can be pretty good to have, especially if you don’t want to join the RCC but might have some long layovers due to cancellations or mechanicals. In the case of irregular operations they can be quite good.
  • The two 500 mile upgrades are not a bad choice either, and are the quickest, most instant gratification. 😉

Just a few thoughts. As stated above, not everyone received all of those, but those are a few common pickings.

About lucky

Ben Schlappig (aka Lucky) is a travel consultant, blogger, and avid points collector. He travels about 400,000 miles a year, primarily using miles and points to fund his first class experiences. He chronicles his adventures, along with industry news, here at One Mile At A Time.

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Comments

  1. The EQM carryover saves you the cost of a ticket, so it is usually the best deal. However, I do think the double flight miles in August or September is also a good choice, but this is usually limited to Premiers or general Members.

  2. I agree guys, but the EQM carryover only saves you the cost of a ticket if you’re at a point where those EQM’s would get you something. For example, if you end the year with 100K EQM’s without this, then those carry forward EQM’s are worth zero. If you end the year with 98K EQM’s, on the other hand, they’re worth a ton.

  3. This year I am benefiting from last year’s 5000 EQM carry-over. I’ll end the year with close to 100,000 miles (per my current planning… there’s of course always the chance for another trip) and so I’ll likely top off my account with a few choices converted to EQMs. WIthout the carry-over, it wouldn’t have been possible and another trip would have been mandatory. I guess in that case I’d have put more effort into the DEQM promotion (only got an extra 1000 miles from that).

  4. I choose the EQM as “just in case” insurance. By year’s end I may not have really needed them, but odds are better than the sweepstakes. 😀

    Last year, I chose 3x miles for September ’08 but will be gone the last half of the month for SZG DO. Hopefully I can get at least 3 runs in before the 15th.

    Thanks for posting your opinions on something like this.

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